While studios fret over piracy of their full movies, unauthorized movie clips are freely swapped and posted on the Internet.
Seeking to monetize the popularity of those iconic snippets, a number of major studios have partnered with MovieClips, a privately held Santa Monica, Calif.-based start-up that offers a centralized Internet destination. The site currently features more than 12,000 individual 30-second to two-minute video clips from major films.
So far the site, which is currently in private beta, has secured deals for the content of six studios, including Fox, MGM, Paramount, Sony, Universal and Warner.
According to CEO Zach James, who co-founded the site along wiht L.A. Film Festival Director Rich Raddon, these deals are based on ad-revenue-sharing arrangements.
There's also a direct-response component, with users able to click on a prominant "buy now" option that lets them order a full-length DVD or Blu-ray version of the selected film from Amazon, or download a digital version from Amazon or iTunes.
And like YouTube, the sites' videos can be embedded into other destinations.